On April 14, U.S. District Judge Christina A. Snyder sentenced former West Hollywood resident and LGBTQ+-rights activist Ed Buck, 67, to 30 years in federal prison for supplying the methamphetamine that killed two gay Black menGemmel Moore and Timothy Deanat his residence, the Los Angeles Blade reported.
"Buck [who had donated more than $500,000 to mostly Democratic causes] used his money and privilege to exploit the wealth and power imbalances between himself and his victims, who were unhoused, destitute, and/or struggling with addiction," Assistant U.S. Attorney Chelsea Norell said in court documents filed in the case. "He spent thousands of dollars on drugs and party and play sessions that destroyed lives and bred insidious addictions."
Buck had seemingly escaped justice until local activists including journalist Jasmyne Cannick, a longtime community activist, were able to get the federal case initiated.
Last July, a federal grand jury last July convicted Buck on the nine-count indictment of charges he supplied the methamphetamine that killed Moore in 2017 and Dean in 2019 during "party-and-play" encounters.
David J. Johnsexecutive director of the National Black Justice Coalition, a leading Black LGBTQ+/SGL civil rights organizationissued the following statement:
"Ed Buck preyed on vulnerable Black same-gender-loving men, stole two of their lives and nearly killed a third person. We are thankful for National Black Justice Coalition co-founder Jasmyne Cannick and the work of others who helped keep our community safe by holding him accountable.
"We celebrate Ed Buck being held accountable and urge community and public safety leaders to do the same for others who have taken and place at extreme risk Black LGBTQ+/SGL livesoften without consequence."
Moore and Dean are the subjects of the documentary Gemmel & Tim. "The film simultaneously investigates the crimes and offers a cautionary tale to keep these events from repeating," according to a description on the movie's website.